Vaccines against COVID-19 will be given priority to people in Britain depending on the risk they run, but operational practical issues may affect who gets it first, said the chairman of Britain’s Joint Vaccination and Immunization Committee.
The highest priority will be given to tenants and nursing home staff, followed by those over the age of 80 and health workers at the forefront of the battle with COVID-19.
“Age is by far the most important risk factor for COVID-19,” Professor Wei Saint-Lim told a news conference, adding that there would be operational flexibility as to where the vaccine could be delivered first.
Boris Johnson will give more details in a press conference this afternoon.
The list of priority groups for the new vaccine:
- Residents of care centers for the elderly (nursing homes) and their carers
- People aged 80 and over and health professionals
- People aged 75 and over
- People aged 70 and over and extremely vulnerable people from a clinical point of view
- People aged 65 and over
- People aged 16 to 64 with underlying diseases that put them at higher risk of serious illness and mortality
- People aged 60 and over
- People aged 55 and over
- People aged 50 and over
Earlier it was reported that Britain is the first country to approve for use the vaccine of the companies Pfizer and BioNTech against coronavirus, with its administration starting next week. “The government has accepted the recommendation of the Independent Drugs and Health Products Regulatory Authority (MHRA) to approve the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine for use,” London was quoted as saying by Reuters.
The British Minister of Health Matt Hancock noted that the vaccination program in the country will start early next week. Hospitals, he said, are already on standby. “From the beginning of next week we will start a vaccination program against COVID-19,” the minister told Sky News, referring to “fantastic news”.
When will vaccine evaluations be completed?
It is noted that on Tuesday the European Medicines Agency (EMA) announced that, if the data is sufficient, it will complete by December 29 the evaluation of the candidate vaccine of Pfizer and BioNTech against COVID-19.
The EMA also announced that it has applied for a marketing authorization for the candidate vaccine of Moderna Inc and that, if the data is sufficient, it will complete its evaluation of this vaccine by 12 January.
Pfizer and BioNTech seek approval in Europe
It is noted that the companies Pfizer and BioNTech submitted the third application to the European Medicines Agency for the conditional approval of their coronavirus vaccine. A relevant request has been submitted to the competent US authorities.
The two companies announced on November 18 the final results of the third phase of their COVID-19 vaccine, according to which it is 95% effective in preventing infection, without causing serious side effects.
Request for use of the vaccine from Moderna
On Monday, the American Moderna Inc. submitted the necessary information for the mRNA vaccine he developed to the control bodies of the USA, Europe and Britain, requesting the issuance of an emergency license.
Their final analysis shows that the vaccine is 94% effective and that it can completely prevent, 100%, severe cases of COVID-19. Also, none of the vaccinated showed serious side effects.